We wanted to create a way where we could read a few books, learn about many titles and have fun doing it! The tournament style reading of the Mighty Smackdown means that in the first round each participant reads two books, discusses both in a blog post, selecting one book to move on to the next round. Teachers are asked to commit to one round but most, if not all, continue on. We will read to the end when we will have only one book left standing!
Hey all! Just added a Google Map to the right hand side bar. Also embedded below. Neat to see where we are all from. Here are the numbers:
21 Teachers and Teacher-Librarians 10 Schools 15 Colleagues from South Side Schools 14 from Junior Highs 9 from West End Schools 8 from East End Schools 4 from High Schools 4 from North Side Schools 1 Book will stand at the end!
I really enjoyed both of these books. Library Wars is based on the novel series of the same name. It's a futuristic manga in which the Japanese government has taken control over all forms of media. Local governments have managed to pass the Library Act allowing libraries to keep books that the government wants censored and destroyed. Even with protection there are those out there whose main objective is to destroy all "inappropriate" books and so the Library Defense Force was born. These agents are trained in library science, martial arts and spy techniques in order to protect libraries and bookstores. There is fighting as well as some romance (a little something for everyone). I liked this book so much that I tried to find the original novels and was disappointed to find that they are only available in the original Japanese. Was it just the premise that made me enjoy this book so much? Will teens enjoy this series as much as I did? I wasn't sure so I let some students read it and they gave it the thumbs up.
The Replacement has the most intriguing cover: a file, a pair of scissors, a horseshoe, all hanging over a baby carriage. The book definitely lives up to its cover. One night, in the town of Gentry, a strange man sneaks in through the window of a house and with his boney fingers snatches a baby out of its crib and leaves something else behind. That something is Mackie, a boy who cannot be anywhere near blood, steel, or consecrated ground. The author does an excellent job of describing the town and the underworld. The plot is both suspenseful and moving. Mackie has been compared to Edward Scissorhands and I agree that those who enjoy that movie or other Tim Burton movies would like this as well. In this her first novel, Brenna Yovanoff tells a wonderfully creepy tale with themes of friendship and the power of family love.
I was impressed with both books but since there has to be a winner I have chosen The Replacement to move on to Round 2.
What would happen if there were virtually no men on earth? The few men that lived didn't influence the female majority whose policies seem to fit a female stereotype - kind, caring, compassionate. Epitaph Road explores this possibility.
The year is 2097. A virus, Elisha's Bear, was released, wiping out the majority of the male population in the entire world. "Once political leadership--all women--was reestablished, priorities changed. Money no longer used for fighting wars and lobbying for wars and profiting from wars got routed to health care, medical research, education, social programs, the environment, alternative transportation, and renewable fuels.
But, what if there is more to the story? What if someone had an axe to grind? Something so terrible happened in their childhood that let them to hate men? Does anyone find out? And if so, do they seek revenge? You will have to read to find out!
So, I just finished my first Smackdown book. I must admit, it took me a little while to get into. Does anyone know of any school in Edmonton that has a Hallway Patrol? I didn't think so. Given that it doesn't happen in our neck-of-the-woods, it didn't seem very realistic. On top of that, I couldn't get Mall Cop out of my head, where the main character thinks he's all that and he's going to save the world with his less than important job. However, this morning I got up and found I had to know what was going to happen to poor Griff Carver, a 7th grader, who was kicked out of his last school after alleged Hallway Patrol misconduct. Knowing that, Principal Sprangue was out to get Carver from the beginning and took away his badge after Carver called Sprangue on his littering! There is an accompanying Griff Carver website http://griffcarver.com/> complete with a hallway patrol game and you can even sign up to receive nice and juicy insider information from Griff and the gang via email.
Griff Carver: Hallway Patrol reminded me of a few books and TV shows. I know that there are many boys who enjoy bathroom humor such as that found in Lois Sachar's There's a Boy in the Girls Bathroom http://www.louissachar.com/>. In addition, there are many upper elementary and junior high students who enjoy a little mystery and intrigue a la Andrew Clements' Landry News http://www.andrewclements.com/>. If they watch any of the Law and Order, CSI or NCIS, there are some crime lab scenes as well that are appropriate for all audiences.
So, it's the day after the day of our first meeting. The author links are added. The book trailers are embedded. And the Twitter feeds, for those authors that have them are, well...feeding. Happy exploring. I had fun doing it!
Thank you again to everyone for coming out on Wednesday. Just finished updating all of the author links. In some cases it links to the publisher's author profile as the author does not have a website. I also linked to interviews in a couple instances. Only found one book trailer for far. I have embedded it below for your viewing pleasure!